Biological Activity of Actinomycetes

Topics: Enzyme, Petroleum, Bacteria Pages: 24 (5768 words) Published: October 12, 2012


The microorganisms are ubiquitous in nature. They are found in probably every environmental condition present on earth. Actinomycetes were originally considered to be an intermediate group between bacteria and fungi but now are recognized as prokaryotic organisms with high G+C (>55%) content in their DNA. Our project aim is to evaluate some biological activities of Actinomycetes like: • Antimicrobial activity

• Oil degradation capability
• Enzymatic activity

In the present study, two Actinomycetes strains were isolated from the rhizosphere of Ervatamia divaricata (ornamental plant) and are identified by microscopic characteristics and biochemical tests. With the help of Bergeys manual of determinative bacteriology 7th edition it was established that one isolate belong to Nocardia family and the other one belong to Streptomyces species.

Our isolates not only shown good antimicrobial activity against the test organisms provided (E. coli, S. aureus, P. aerogenosa, B. amyloliquefaciens) but also able to degrade Castrol oil. Out of two isolates one was able to produce Amylase enzyme but lack in producing other enzymes like beta-Glycosidase, Chitinase.

Our work can be taken forward to study many more biological activities. Also each activity we study is a complete project in itself and our results promise for application of our isolates in Amylase production and also possible source of novel antibiotics.

Keywords: Antimicrobial activity, Heavy metal, oil degradation capability and enzymatic activity.


The name`actinomycetes’ was derived from greek `aktis’(a ray) and mykes(fungus) and given to these organisms form initial observation of their morphology. | |

| |branched gram-positive bacteria, often found in soil, some of which are pathogenic for humans and animals. |

These are any of various filamentous or rod-shaped, often pathogenic microorganisms of the order Actinomycetales that are found in soil . These organisms are intermediate between the bacteria and the true fungi, mainly resembling the latter because they usually produce fungal mycelium actinomycetes are best known for their ability to produce antibiotic and are gram positive bacteria which comprise a group of branching unicellular microorganisms. They produce branching mycelium which may be of two kinds viz., substrate mycelium and aerial mycelium.

History: The History of actinomycetes is mostly related to its use as an antibiotic. Its use as an anti fungal agent in the past is mostly responsible for its popularity with antibiotic research today.From 1914 to 1939, Selman A. Waksman had been systematically screening soil bacteria and fungi in an attempt to find an antibiotic for Tuberculosis. In 1939, at the University of California he discovered the effect of certain fungi, especially antinomycetes, on bacterial growth. Actinomycetes slowed bacterial growth because of the antibiotics they produce. In 1940, he was able to isolate an effective TB antibiotic, actinomycin. The only problem was this was too toxic for usage by humans and animals. Since then, numerous antibiotics have been created using actinomycetes..

SIZE: (0.2-1.0 um in diameter and 1.5-5.0 um in length ), ...

SHAPE: The bacteria are rod-like in shape. Under the light microscope, Actinomyces appear fungus-like.




Growth of actinomycetes:


• actinomycetes (and fungi) reproduce via spores

• hyphal growth is followed by fragmentation
and release of spores

• conidia – spores...
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